The Senoi taught children through a form of dream therapy to navigate the edge of their fears and likewise navigate their fears in the outer world. Inception requires this fear to navigate its narrative, a curtain falling endlessly on western myths: does the dreamstate reveal our failure to conceive a life beyond fears?
"The simplest anxiety or terror dream I found among the Senoi was the falling dream. When the Senoi child reports a falling dream, the adult answers with enthusiasm, "That is a wonderful dream, one of the best dreams a man can have. Where did you fall to, and what did you discover?" He makes the same comment when the child reports a climbing, travelling, flying or soaring dream. The child at first answers, as he would in our society, that it did not seem so wonderful, and that he was so fightened that he awoke before he had fallen anywhere.
"That was a mistake," answers the adult authority. "Everything you do in a dream has a purpose, beyond your understanding while you are asleep. You must relax and enjoy yourself when you fall in a dream. Falling is the quickest way to get in contact with the powers of the spirit world, the powers laid open to you through your dreams. Soon, when you have a falling dream, you will remember what I am saying and you will feel that you are travelling to the source of the power which has caused you to fall."
"The falling spirits love you. They are attracting you to their land, and you have but to relax and remain asleep in order to come to grips with them. When you meet them, you may be frightened of their terrific power, but go on. When you think you are dying in a dream, you are only receiving the powers of the other world, your own spiritual power, which has been turned against you and which now wishes to become one with you if you will accept it."
"The common denominator of much ideology is that it seeks to hide or to justify asymmetrical relationships: relationships in which a fitness gain to ego is achieved at some cost to alter. Asymmetrical (or parasitic) relationships can be maintained through deceit coercion or combination of the two. Deceit is endemic in systems of reciprocity. But systems of reciprocity are vulnerable not only to deceit: they are also open to coercion. To the extent that power imbalances exist in a reciprocal interaction, reciprocity can easily be transformed into coercion.
Coercion is not a human monopoly, Male animals use force or threats to displace or eliminate competition, to gain access to females in oestrus, to secure submission of subordinates and so on. Some mammals are even capable of forming small coalitions of two or four males in order to obtain a collective dominance over individual rivals. Some animal societies can be said to have rudimentary "ruling classes." Humans do, however, hold pride of place in their ability to use to good effect conscious, collective, organized, premeditated coercion in order to establish, maintain, and perpetuate systems of intraspecific parasitism.'
'The concept of “race” as used in North America to designate a phenotypically distinct group, was imported into Asia by some scholars who applied it to a situation best described in terms of caste. The Eta or Burakumin of Japan have been described by DeVos and and Wagatsuma as an “invisible” race. Thus the terminological confusion has come full circle. Some phenotypically distinct racial groups have been called “castes” by analogy with the Hindu system. Conversely, some physically indistinguishable caste groups have been called “races” by analogy with North American society.
Where does this semantic imbroglio lead us? It is useful to have a special analytical term applicable to a wide range of societies to designate that particular combination of class and ethnicity. “Race” will not do for that purpose, since only some of these systems are based on phenotypical distinctions. Furthermore, not all societies that do make phenotypical distinctions have the degree of rigidity and racial endogamy that one associates with caste. Examples of such race-conscious but relative flexible social systems are Brazil, most Caribbean islands, Hawaii and others. “Race” has a utility as an analytical concept to designate phenotypically distinguished groups but not as a synonym for “caste.” “Race” can be a special case of caste but also a special case of more flexible social orders.'
The Ethnic Phenomenon Pierre Van Der Berghe 1981 Praeger
Sambo published in 1899 arrived in a time of unabashed ethnicism (racism) in the west. The term Sambo has many iterations, one stems from ethnicism in the U.S. and extends to misnomers regarding even a restaurant chain that incorporated Bannerman's images while its naming stemmed from the combination of the owners' names' syllable hyphenate Sam-bo. Bannerman's book shown above illustrated English colonial sentiment in India prior to its expulsion.
Set in the near and far future, A.I. was to be Kubrick's antithesis to both The Shining and 2001, instead of an odyssey, a fable: on an Earth succumbing to greenhouse ocean encroachment, a boy named David is created mechanically to imitate love on behalf of humans (an indication that humans no longer experience it), he gains greater awareness than his human owners (and creator) of the emotion, is orphaned by expulsion, experiences dire adventures with an opposite (a male robot created to fulfill pleasure instead of love) then escapes all grasp as he comprehends what they do not. His final act is to submerge in the underwater valleys of New York's ruins and patiently await the awakening of a statue of The Blue Fairy (set in the ruins of Luna Park, Coney Island). Thousands of years pass, metaphysically like the stargate infinity or the mute finiteness of Mr. Torrance's frozen still; life becomes extinct on an ice covered earth, the boy's passage is ended when ultra conscious beings, hybrids between robots and living entities, unearth him and allow him a 'day' of consciousness before his data is assimilated. No doubt an adventure Kubrick would have engineered as near satire hovering above calm efficiency, its remains exist inside an oddly sentimental version made by Spielberg. By rendering it for children he collapses the very meaning of the film while keeping its plot largely intact. Was it a test given to him by Kubrick? Thames and Hudson published a coffee table book that showcases how closely Spielberg followed the visuals Kubrick imagined, and incredibly, it proves visuals alone are not the center of any director's craft, we require the tone of interaction. Kubrick was certain David was to be a digital creation as no human could truly imitate a robot.
Could Kubrick have been any more obvious: the mecha discover a scaled-monolith before they find David. The test, how do you get this mega-structure onto a frame 2.33:1?
No doubt interested in more melting Nazis a la Raiders of the Lost Ark, Diller's Paramount regime hired Michael Mann to adapt grand guignol novel The Keep for his second outing following the razor sharp Thief. After his confusing rough cut came in at three hours, Diller ordered belts tightened and scuttled expensive post-effects. The remains are a varied mess that hint at what might have been, the darkest view inside the mysticism of evil.
Below, Lutz's first encounter with the underworld, storyboarded:
Just as in the 60's, our age's media is enmeshed in cycles of heroic films transplanted from our far and near past mythistories. Talk about neo-conservative, the superhero with his/her origins in comics is a retrograde icon. Film studios: taking us backwards one myth at a time.